Photo of White Citizens Council meeting at the Township Auditorium, January 1956 (Image courtesy of The State)
The Rise of “Massive Resistance”
White South Carolinians joined the growing “Massive Resistance” movement which arose in opposition to the Brown mandate and local initiatives to integrate public schools and accommodations. They formed White Citizens Councils to obstruct racial progress using economic terrorism, intimidation, and violence. To shape public opinion and recruit new members, Citizens Councils held mass rallies such as one held in Columbia’s Township Auditorium in January 1956.